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PANTALEON’S PROPHETIC SATIRE
To the most noble Lord Robert Kerr of Ancram, Knight and Gentleman of the Bedchamber to the Most Serene King of Great Britain, From the Author, James Hume of Godescroft, Doctor of Medicine, a Scot.
At the Widow Courant, in the Place Poterne near the Palace.
TO THE MOST NOBLE LORD ROBERT KERR OF ANCRAM, KNIGHT AND GENTLEMAN OF THE BEDCHAMBER TO THE MOST SERENE KING OF GREAT BRITAIN
OW I must return to my home, to my native place, yea even from the farthest reaches of the world to my country and my people. I have never made any error more serious than to have failed to cultivate your acquaintance, O most noble Sir. Such great kindnesses are owed to you, who transferred your friendship for my father to his children and made it (so to speak) hereditary. Although I am known to you only by name, and although I have fallen far short of my great father’s talents and cannot be praised as he was, nevertheless there remains still a spark of his talents and wit in me, which will gleam all the more brightly when rekindled by the kindly breath of my prince. This spark, which is now hidden in ashes and covered with cinders, in exile from its native land for so many years, will continue to lie hidden unless you bring it out into the light and present it before the eyes of the world. Who else can I expect to do this? No kinsman loves our family and our native virtue as much as you do. No one, I repeat, is more endowed with generosity and the ability to exercise it. For my part, I dedicate myself completely to my native land and my prince; perhaps I can be of use to my land and my prince even in my humble manner of life. Not in vain will I have undertaken such labors, made such journeys, or traversed so many provinces. So here I show you this small book, a small specimen indeed, but from a talent which can produce larger volumes, and will produce them with your inspiration, if I find favor with you. And I know that I will find favor. It would be criminal to doubt one whose many kindnesses we have often received, kindnesses more freely and generously offered by you rather than angled for by us. In conclusion, may you live long and well, and may you happily enjoy the favor of our great king, favor which not Fate alone, but Fate and your virtues have bestowed upon you in recompense for your great merits. Farewell, O Sir most noble in nature and in race.
YOUR MOST DEVOTED
CONSIDER myself to be the most unhappy of men, since my undertakings end in a loss, and those whose kindness I seek to attract by my talents shudder at the name “Satire” and turn away from me as one worse than a serpent or a viper. I am a rival of the great John Barclay, not in malice but in eloquence, and I am more desirous of matching his fame than of insulting anyone. I am trying to excite laughter in the reader, not indignation, and if I were going to attack anyone in this satire, my friends at least would not be my targets. If Barclay made mistakes, should I be punished for it? If he sinned (as they say) against his friends — even those who were most generous to him — should I be charged with the same offense? Who would call this fair or just? We all do not have the same habits, the same character. If I am as desirous of fame as he was, do they think me as ungrateful as he was (if indeed he was ungrateful)? The sun never shone on ingratitude from me, nor will it ever. I am writing not what I did or saw myself, but what I read or hear is commonly done. I am inventing, putting myself in the story, what I know never happened, and I am creating a completely toothless satire, such a satire as will bewitch with its sweet murmurings those ears and minds which have been corrupted and alienated by crooked speech. I beg the reader not to think that I am plotting against anyone’s reputation; this is very far from my goal and my talents.
OW the sun had reached the top of his circular course and was driving the nocturnal humors from the dewy grass, when in the winding paths of the forest sleepless anxiety was driving on the most veracious of prophets—me. I am called Pantaleon,
No elms raised themselves on high, no leafy oaks made shade for the travelers, but a woodland covered the extensive fields with low bushes, shrubs, and spreading vines. I was filled with indignation that a man such as I, a participant in the hidden counsels of the gods, was stuck in this remote pathway. Finally after various wanderings I emerged from the undergrowth and saw two men breaking clods with a harrow not far off. They were wasting their grain in the furrows of an upturned field. I began to run, and taking very long leaps with feet spread wide, I had traversed five acres of land when I caught my foot in a furrow and fell, and my cranium hit a rock, drawing blood. When I cried out as I fell, both peasants rushed to my aid. I looked towards them with a face bespattered with tears, blood, and dirt mixed together and said: “O dull-witted mortals, I grieve, not for the shame of this stupid fall and not for my injury, which is most serious, but for your unhappy fate; you are sowing in this unrewarding soil seed which you will never harvest. You will get no benefit from digging around the trees, from mulching, or from grafting the vines as they bud. Unhappy farmers will see no harvest or vintage this year. Stirred by the spirit of prophecy, I will not sleep at night until I can avert your doom.”
2. At my words these most wicked villains were carried away with laughter, and one of the peasants replied: “O most far-seeing of prophets, you don’t know the doom which hangs over you, and you predict what will happen to us far in the future!” That villain wanted to add more insults, but the other, more humane, with a barely suppressed smile took up my case and responded: “You are really a savage, since this young man has perhaps been driven mad by spooks and hobgoblins or — which I believe more likely — is now weak and hung-over from yesterday’s indulgence. It is better to pity him than to receive him in his misery with vulgar laughter. Instead, why not wash the dirt off his bloody wound and give him some medical aid with praiseworthy kindness?” But the other shook his head and wrinkled his nose, saying: ”Not me. You are crazy enough to help this madman, who is quite like you. I am involved enough with our master’s oppressive labors that I will not lift a finger.” And, saying that, he took off. But with no delay the most courteous plowman applied a cloth gently to my face and washed off the gore. He took some muddy fluid out of a nearby ditch in his cup of Diogenes and bathed my face until it regained its former glow, and with a bandanna pulled out of his pocket he dried my eyes, which were wet with tears.
3. But the other man, worse than a beast, had just returned to his harrow when a violent downpour of clubs beat on his head and shoulders, and he lay stretched out prostrate on the ground. For two beardless men dressed in multicolored clothing, one holding a pole, the other a cudgel, were crushing the bones of the miserable peasant with frequent blows applied with the full vigor of their arms. They took vengeance with all their might for the villain’s laughter at my injury and left him almost crushed and half dead. But my “doctor” was astonished at the sudden disaster to his companion, and although no one was chasing him, he fled into the nearby grove and hid himself where the trees were most dense. I was also terrified in no small way that this hurricane of blows with its evil wind would also sweep me away. I now feared not only for my face, but also for my whole head and body.
4. But now a man rushed up, whose gray hair confessed his advanced years and who was riding on a horse of a similar color. By the noise of blows and the shouts of the peasant he was called back to bring aid where there was no one on guard. A short, but broad, sword with a golden hilt was under his left arm. A broad leather sword-belt rested on his right shoulder and circling from front to rear under his left arm, suspended the sword. The sword belt was covered with a very thick and nappy scarlet silk where it touched his body. On the outside the Phrygian workmanship rose in little puckers and made somewhat deep folds in the fringes. The bull’s hide could not be seen in any part, but golden workmanship with its engraving covered the entire object and gave courtly grace to the one who wore it.
5. He asked what had happened, and discovering the facts, approached me with a rapid pace. While I was gathering myself for flight, he called me back, addressing me courteously. So I stopped and when he asked me where I came from and who I was, I told him. He then fixed his gaze on me for a short while and said: “O most famous prophet, so it is you! Your reputation has rapidly spread everywhere. For a long time I have been seeking you, who are as moveable as a weathervane.” And bandaging the gash in my forehead and binding my head around with fine linen which the old man usually employed as a handkerchief, he ordered me to get on a vacant horse which just now had been left by its rider (now a walker) and which a household servant, himself mounted on a horse, led forward.
6. I seated myself straddling the beast as it jolted on its way, and I reported to the old man all the details of what had happened to my forehead, about which he closely questioned me. I also had to embroider the facts of my life, starting from the very beginning: where I was born, of what parents, whether I was of knightly origin, and what was the reason for my leaving my homeland. In addition with a disagreeable thirst after knowledge he kept urging me to publish to everyone whatever secrets I had determined to hide from all mortals. And so I artfully contrived many responses and satisfied the inquisitive and nasty old man’s curiosity in all respects, inventing various falsehoods to suit the situation. At last my tongue was weary, my head was injured, and swollen with the pain of talking, I was suffering more from this than from my broken forehead. In order to turn the tables on the old man and not be continually talking myself, and in order to give a truce to this conversation and to alleviate my headache by listening for a change, I begged his pardon and asked what crime his peasant had committed to be overwhelmed with such a tornado of blows.
7. He said: “Be aware, Pantaleon, that I am called by the name Chrysophilus, of noble descent and with numerous offspring. My family is well known in these parts and all the neighbors (both of my rank and lower) have looked up to it for many centuries. This nefarious rascal dared defile this ancient dignity, dared stamp on it with both feet! Yesterday while my servants were engaged in hunting birds, he snatched a blackbird, which was already half dead, from the very claws of my falcon. He did not do this because he was moved by pity. No indeed, the voracious glutton, although accustomed to feast on common bread, gobbled up this morsel stolen from my table. My bondsmen pursued his insolent boldness, but were unable to stop him. Their energy was sapped by hedges raised with turf and thick with trees, bristling with twining bushes and brambles, not to mention the ditches dug deeper to increase their depth. They would not have uncovered the stolen feast if he had not cast aside all shame and fear of me, and had not invited bellies like his to run riot over my joy and pleasure in their mugs and cups. But they found him and inflicted punishment at the same time (as was right), satisfying upon his person both the injury to me and his scorn of your forehead.
8. “But, Pantaleon, prince of all prophets (far from false fame has brought this fact to my ears), I want to know one thing from you. Although standing practically at the edge of the grave, I married a young bride, one of reasonable appearance, although she would not set the town on fire. But she is barren as a bare rock; indeed I have not strengthened my tottering house by any of my efforts to impregnate this woman, who has a blocked womb, and this vexes me deeply, more than anything else. I am richly and lavishly endowed with money and sufficiently stuffed with Spanish gold doubloons, but I fear more than death itself that I am going to bequeath my business, my moneybags, and my rich takings to ungrateful nephews. Please, Pantaleon, what do you think will come of this matter?”
9. I was somewhat puzzled, but while I was attempting a reply, Chryophilus suffered a sudden attack in the joint where his upper arm was joined to his forearm with a moveable link of eight closely-knit bones. He cried aloud as the reins slipped from his stricken hand. Since the topic of conversation had changed, I moved to distract the old man’s mind from his pain by promising no small relief, at which he paid close attention and listened gladly. But all of a sudden one of his household met us and indicated that his doctor had arrived. The old man said: “How convenient it is that you are here, Pantaleon. No more learned man than he now treads the round ball of earth. He is renowned not only in this hemisphere, but also in the other hemisphere. Only the immense space of half the globe prevents him from being transported forthwith to patients in the Antipodes. Daily those Antipodeans curse the immense distance which deprives them of his assistance.”
10. One of his footmen added: “Certainly in the king’s court he is admired above all. I will give you certain proof of his deep learning and evidence of a spirit immersed in the depths of science. At times this man wears boots extending up to the knee, scarlet inside and white outside, made from the hides of cattle sent here from the Balkans. He belabors the flanks of his noble steed with pricking spurs. At other times he guides with the reins that deceiving offspring resulting from the mating of both types of pack animals, a stubborn mule which was hidden by black saddle blankets which fell practically to the ground on both sides. At one time he is cloaked in Spanish wool woven into cloth and wears a similar riding jacket covering his shoulders and embroidered all over with the thickest silk. At another time the man is dressed all in silk and marches ahead escorted by a troop of footmen. While the noblemen dress themselves in their bedchambers, he attracts everyone’s gaze to himself with a long, learned dissertation. Even more, he alone wins all the prizes for his extensive reading in all books. I will tell you something not from hearsay, but what I witnessed in a bookstore with my own two eyes. He read through two hundred volumes in a three-hour period, a master of his active and retentive talent. Once having seen the beginning, the end, and the middle of a text, he had it all by heart. Putting the first text back in the shelf, so that the bookseller would not lose it, he ran through another text with equal speed, and the next day before dawn he honors the king or a city grandee with a word-for-word recitation of the entire two hundred volumes. It is not only I who say this, but the tongues of everyone make him most worthy of admiration and most learned.”
11. Thus the servant. But I said: “Therefore that most learned man is more learned than the bookseller because he knows all the plots, and everyone admires that windbag because he talks and chatters, and because he wears a beaver hat on his head!”
12. While we were thus growling at each other, the blue roof of Chrysophilus’s house appeared through a small grove of trees, and soon the whole house was visible, skillfully put together of stone and mortar, with polished stone making up the corners and the openings in the building. As soon as we arrived, I jumped to the ground, handing the care of my animal to one of the master’s servants. I could not yet stand upright with my face to the heavens (as befits an astrologer), but completely exhausted by the misery caused by my jolting and stumbling horse, I walked bowlegged with my body bent in an arc. Since Chrysophilus now had a short respite from his pain and was calmer, that famous doctor, Coloeus by name, stepped up to greet him. Marching forward in a stately manner and putting a grave expression on his face, he asked about the old man’s health, prefacing his question with a courteous but lengthy disquisition which displayed a real love of talking.
13. When he learned about the effects of the spring weather, he said: “These indications have never led me astray. Because of the harshness of the past winter and the extreme humidity at the beginning of this year, I had a foreboding that this disease, which I had kept from erupting for two years, was about to break out. The immediate causative factor for this disease is the watery, liquid humor flowing from the brain and descending from the external areas of the lambdoid suture through the fleshy organs of voluntary motion, i.e. the organs of sense in the skin or the fatty passageways. This humor is often hot, as coming from a hot bodily organ, and is spewed out of the bodily or vital passages into the joints of the bones, and by tearing at their tendons and integuments, this humor causes excruciating agony.
14. “I am well aware that some learned men say that this humor is derived from the occipit alone, and assert that these fluxions in the joints are only an affliction under the skin. But the blood putrefies with redness and inflammation of the affected part, and is expressed in the body by the violence of this obstinate pain, and when the sun is radiant these symptoms appear in those who are overflowing with hot blood. But the Pergamene philosopher himself, whose testimony will never lose its validity, supports a more sensible opinion, when he maintains that the griping of the bowels, sometimes bloody and ulcerated from its affliction, sometimes without blood, sometimes without any signs of disturbance, refrains from vexing the sick man, since the matter/humor has been sent to the joints. When there is blockage of the anus by bloody tumors, or when the menstruation of women is hindered, or when the usual looseness of the veins is lost, or when the elevated temperature is not present on the expected day of the fever, then pain in the joints begins. In addition, when transpiration through imperceptible passages is prevented, as in fat people, then the entire framework of the body occasionally sends this matter/humor to the joints. All parts of the body do the same in arthritic attacks.
15. “Galen mentions two causes of this affliction. One is the weakness of the receptive part caused by looseness of the tendons and connective tissue; this is often inherited from the parents, often comes from excessive lusts as well as immoderate gluttony and the resulting aftereffects. The second is the influx of humor which excites the transmissive part to eject it, either because of its nature or its abundance. This humor, moving to weakened places and then to even weaker, is finally shaken off by the force of nature after the pain has lasted some time. The disease remains in remission until new material for distillation accumulates. But if the fat and sluggish humor which has been forced into the joints remains for a long time after its arrival there, then compressed by natural heat it becomes stony. This usually happens when sweating is stopped by the application of cold, or when the fine substances are dissipated by too much heat while the coarse substances are dried in place.”
16. The whinnying of approaching horses broke off this oration. When those who had ridden hither had slipped off their horses, they quick-marched forward to greet Chrysophilus. As he approached, the first one touched the first fingers of his hand to his thumb and bent forwards. As if he were about to lift up the old man, who was making the same theatrical gestures and looked as if he were falling down, he touched his head to the old man’s head and bent his body down to the ground. Afterwards he stepped backwards, bending his knee, withdrawing first his right foot, then his left in turn. He stopped, putting his forward heel on a line drawn in the dust. Then they fixed their gaze on each other, and finishing this preliminary skirmishing with courteous words, they both separated, the newcomer giving way to one behind him. The old man went in his turn to meet the others, and all acting the same charade, each in order (for four men had arrived), he received them with this charming performance.
17. Then Chrysophilus pointed the way leading into the house. But that first arrival, placing his hand on his chest, bending his back and bowing his head while shrugging his shoulders — the very image of the three-headed Geryon — asked the old man that he should show them the entryway by preceding them.
But the old man said: “I will never commit such a sin.”
Then the other said: “I cannot thus ignore my duty and my obligations to you.”
Then Chrysophilus: “Please omit this courtly elegance, at least here in the country.”
The other: “I yield to you in eloquence, since I have made no progress at court, but I know how to stay here motionless until midnight, if you do not go first.”
Then the old man: “But I will be more motionless than mountains and crags. I will never move a foot. Anyone can surpass me in courage, but no one in stubbornness.”
Then his guest: “But why are we arguing among friends? Am I such a stranger in your house?” Thus stunned, they stood silent for a time with their eyes fixed on the ground. They excited no small doubt in me whether they were in earnest or just playing a part, and I was eager to see the finale of this delightful farce.
18. But very soon Chrysophilus tired of this nonsense and said: “A porter is master in his own house, and in this place it is fair and just to yield to my wishes.” And straightway he seized his guest around the waist and most kindly shoved him onto the drawbridge which linked the house and garden. (For a deep moat filled with still water surrounded the house on all sides, which was protected on the east, where it was closed off by a large pond, by its location and the skill of the builders.) The other guests went through a very similar performance, but defeated by the example of the first guest, they gave less trouble to the old man as he pushed them into the house. As they entered, they were received in a spacious courtyard, then in a hall decorated all around with tapestries hanging from the top of the walls.
19. While I was curiously surveying the images embroidered in these tapestries, one of the recent arrivals, Sophronius by name, put his hand on my shoulder and addressed me quite companionably: “Hello, aren’t you grateful to us, who kept you from such danger?”
I said: “Well, who in the world are you? Do you think I am a student of the Ignatian Sphinx? If you want anything, tell me openly”
Then he: “Do you know that quack?”
And I: “Who? Do you mean the king’s chief physician?”
“He is the one,” Sophronius responded and was overcome with laughter as he spoke. “The sun would have finished his course before that chatterbox had finished his speech, if our arrival had not interrupted him. Crueler than any tyrant, he tortures everyone he meets who has enough patience to listen to him. His victim may not interrupt, cannot respond, but can only listen to him rambling in his perpetual mumble and agree with his statements. I heard him lecturing to some peasants who had come to consult him; they were stupefied at his Greek citations from the Pergamene and the Stagyrite. Whoever approaches him as a country-fellow leaves as either a philosopher or a doctor. Even so, I wonder that he cultivates Chrysophilus so carefully, since Chrysophilus, who behaves like an illiterate and coarse man, not long ago persuaded those who were urging him to confirm by oath his marriage with an heiress that Peruvian barbarians had raised him. For Chrysophilus’s brother, who had no children, named him as his heir, on the condition that he give a dowry of 2000 gold pieces to the niece whom they had in common.”
20. Since Chrysophilus (no doubt warned by the tingling of his ears) was looking at us as we talked, Sophronius lowered his voice and said to me: “Let’s listen to what they are saying. From the old man’s face I can see it is something ridiculous.” The old man said: “You have arrived just in time,”then to the man who had been chatting with him: “Please run over this narrative again for Pantaleon’s benefit, so that he will know what crafty geniuses our soil produces.”
21. Then the other man said: “Neither does Sophronius know this story, which I recently heard from the main actor in the drama and have saved for you, My Lord, for as long as she lived, the woman in question, the wife of a wholesale merchant, purchased from my informant his silence by money rather than by entreaties. Anyway, bewitched by the love of a noble and handsome young man, whose name was Cleon, she was in the habit of receiving him into her bed as soon as her husband was out of town. Manilius, an acquaintance of the young man, but connected by a friendship more close than real, extracted information about the affair from the unthinking youth. The loose-lipped Cleon disclosed both his mistress’s home and the secret ways into the house. Not satisfied with this betrayal, the young man pointed out his beautiful mistress during a crowded merchants’ ball in a neighboring house where they often came in the evening after supper to dance. At that time he had a long private conversation with her, which gave credence to his boasting. While this was going on, Manilius pretended to watch the singers, but eavesdropped on the chattering lovers, which Cloris (this was the woman’s name) did not notice.
22. “After a long talk, she whispered in Cleon’s ear the time for their next rendezvous: “Tomorrow, late in the day, come through the back door, and while my husband is in Magorothum transporting goods brought from Spain, we shall wallow in our usual delights.” Cleon promised, then said: ”‘But a serious matter hangs over me and will drive me from the city, unless you help. I need 100 gold pieces.” She replied: “Don’t worry. You have power over me and over my possessions.”’ Manilius was inflamed by the woman’s beauty, but when he heard of this assignation at short notice, he began to consider how he might remove Cleon and become his substitute. So that he might excite no suspicions in Cleon about his intentions, he concealed from his friend the burning desire which Cloris’s beauty had excited. He contrived this scheme; he forged a letter from Cleon’s uncle in this vein:
Your affairs are now pressing on us, dear nephew. Your recently deceased father’s creditors are making demands of your mother and me from all sides. In this most important matter we are helpless. Do not postpone your trip to this village, where I will await you this evening at the inn. The servant who brought this letter will be your guide. Farewell. Written at Melun.
When he received this letter, Cleon did not advise his mistress, but hurried on his way, guided by his uncle’s servant. The servant stole away from Cleon as soon as they arrived at Melun, as he had been instructed by Manilius. The young man, deserted and in a passion, wandered around all the inns, but nowhere found his uncle. Finally the memory of his abandoned Cloris came belatedly to his mind.
23. “Meanwhile late in the night Manilius beat on Cloris’s door. The maid who had been ordered to wait for Cleon lit a candle and unlocked the door. Manilius had wrapped a cloak around his face and had pulled his hat down to his eyes. He blew out this (potentially) damaging light and was taken directly into Cloris’s room by the maid, who suspected nothing. For a long time they rejoiced in the pleasures of Venus, but in the intervals between bouts, which lovers usually pass by making jokes and frolics, Manilius kept an obstinate silence, and if he ever had to speak, he muffled his voice and compressed his breathing, thus making his words indistinct. The woman was very uncertain until as day approached, he asked for the 100 gold pieces, thus taking away all her unease, since Cloris believed that not even the gods could know about the money, if Cleon were not there. So she called the maid and ordered her to bring the purse which she had specially labeled. When it was brought in, Cloris put it in the hands of her unknown lover. Manilius took the purse and inventing some business, he immediately dressed, even though Cloris, unused to an empty bed, could hardly endure to see him depart before dawn.
24. “But Manilius, not satisfied with this first taste of plunder, again and again walked by Cloris’s shop, looking for a chance to catch her alone. Finally he found her alone and asked her to bring out the choicest merchandise. He was so quick to start negotiating about the price that you would have said that there was an opposing bidder. But when he pulled out the purse and showed her the gold and silver coins, then Cloris realized what had happened the previous night, and the redness of her blushes extinguished the light of her eyes. Fainting with anxiety and fear, she could barely draw her breath. Finally, under compulsion, she gathered the required audacity and taking him aside, attempted to minimize the disgrace with these words: ‘If you do not stir up talk about me, you may have access to both my money and my love. I freely give you as a gift that purse and the merchandise for which you bargained.’ He responded that there was no difficulty in insuring the silence of a taciturn man, and that although he was less charming than Cleon, nevertheless her outstanding beauty would compel him to do his duty with honor. In this way she made an agreement for silence and trustworthiness with this substitute lover, and for the two years which she lived, they enjoyed each other with mutual delight.”
25. The audience did not refrain from laughter. Then Sophronius began his tale. “In a nearby city a citizen uncovered in a neat way the deceit of his wife, whom he had long suspected. Having heard from some acquaintances about his wife’s associations with her city friends, he pretended to set out on a distant journey. The woman, famished for love, grabbed with both hands the opportunity presented by her husband’s absence and summoned two lovers, lest she suffer a shortage. She welcomed them with a table spread lavishly, everyone encouraging each other’s passions with alternating drinks and embraces. They came together as if in a contest, the lovers competing as if they were ashamed to lose the first prize for masculine endurance. This contest was most pleasing to the woman, who was at the same time the location of the struggle, the umpire, and the goal towards whom all efforts were directed. Whatever competitive spirit the lovers felt, they utterly spent it on her womanhood.
26. “Meanwhile the husband returned from his pretended journey, and beating on the door he disturbed the lusty joys of the lovers. The prudent woman recognized who was knocking on the door, and with hurried forethought, she separated the two lovers lest, if they talked with each other, their presence be revealed by the noise. She told one to climb into the attic, another she hid in the cellar. She then covered her disheveled hair with a veil and her neck with a shawl, and she straightened her dress, which had been disarranged by the bouts of love, and put a bold expression on her face. Only then did she unlock the door and admit her husband. He suspected the truth and asked what had delayed her opening the door. She replied that she had been tied up in household affairs and was slow to hear him knocking; besides she was not expecting this sudden return of her dear husband. She added those endearments that a woman with a bad conscience usually uses to avert her wronged husband’s suspicions. He called her a treacherous wife and declared that her wicked life was well known to him and that he was sure that some adulterer was in the house. The woman denied it and called on all the gods and goddesses to witness that she was a woman of unblemished virtue. But the husband persisted and charged her with lecherous fornication polluting their marriage bed. Finally after the woman had talked non-stop (by which even Jupiter was defeated and silenced), he answered her only with this: ‘The One who looks down on our actions from on high knows that you are an evil woman.’ At that the lover hidden in the upper balcony, who could easily look down on their violent quarreling through the cracks which had opened in the ceiling due to the age of the sheathing, and who was worried, thinking that the husband meant him, cried out in alarm: ‘But on the contrary, the man in the cellar, who looks up at your actions, is just as aware as I am.’ Thus the entire farce came to light, and the enraged citizen threw his wife out of the house.”
27. Everyone had collapsed with laughter, with only Coloeus pulling a stern face at this lewd story, whether he was of a censorious nature by inclination , or whether he thought that this gravity suited his profession — although it certainly did not suit such a talkative man.
Begone, all you Catos
Who frown at innocent games, and who fear harmless
Words, and who try hard to force your gloomy morals
On the world. If the credulous mind of man invents any
Useless and stupid laws, you are able to keep them,
Whose cold spirit gropes blindly in the gloomy shades
Of sad night; frozen in ice your blood flows cold,
Trapped deep in your bodies. Therefore he teaches
Virtue with a threatening face, and possessing
Those barbarous vices which stepmother Nature hates,
He teaches the man who would rather not be barbaric to be unhappy voluntarily.
Why do men fear Hell? No punishment is more hellish
Than these rigid morals. But when a heavenly breeze
Wafts over their minds, then it is pleasant
To receive the arrows of the divine boy and to foster the flame in our bosoms,
And to cherish the silent warmth with harmless sport,
Rejoicing in the wounds proper to love, and to keep sadness
Away from our serene faces, and to stir up the fire of love with jests.
O happy Barbary, where disturbances of the mind do not
Take away soothing sleep, where worry about a
Harsh mistress does not torment the lover, where the suitor,
Driven mad, does not hang himself at the doorway of his savage belovèd
Nor open his vitals with a sword, staining her ground with his blood.
There insane love and the nervous worries of a husband
(Worries which provide subjects for tears and tragedies)
Do not disturb these joys with fearful cares.
There the tongues of the rabble do not prevent love’s delights,
Nor care torment girls who are worried about their reputations,
Who do not know that trouble is a lesser evil than vicious rumor.
For there our kindly Mother Nature has distributed
Light-hearted fires of love, and she has decreed that honor be
Far off, in a holy land. Indeed, whatever holy nations America
Has produced, she forbade them from annoying the profane.
28. With some sort of poetic madness I poured out these verses against Coloeus’s morality, when Chrysophilus suddenly suffered a recurrence of the pain in his joints and accompanied by his guests, went into his bedroom. Only Sophronius remained with me. As I entered the room, a maiden (this was Chrysophilus’s sister-in-law) approached from the other side of the courtyard. She was half-clothed and her unkempt hair was falling to her shoulders. She bent her knees slightly to lower her height, and shortly jumped up a little with an imperceptible movement and offered her cheek for a kiss. Sophronius, puckering his lips as if to give her a kiss, barely touched her snow-white cheek. Afterwards he stepped back with his face turned down to the ground as if he had been charged with a crime, and drawing back each foot in turn he scraped the dirt with his foot. This cold reception of a beautiful girl seemed quite boorish to me, and so I approached in a more polished manner, looked at the cheek presented to me, and impressed with tender lips a hearty loud kiss right where the ruddy glow invited it. At this Sophronius laughed and the girl, drawing back, blushed. She certainly felt somewhat bashful, but glancing at me sideways she left me in doubt whether my boldness had displeased her; for while she talked with Sophronius she kept looking at me with inviting eyes. I withdrew so as not to interrupt their conversation, and I lightened my boredom by gazing through the window at the pleasant garden just below.
29. After some talk and after her hair had been dressed by her maid in two braids circling the back of her head, she put on a silk dress with a blue and white cambric ruff around her shoulders, in the semicircular shape of the waxing moon; for this ruff had been stiffened with starch and sat firmly on her shoulders, scarcely touching the underlying clothing. She frequently consulted her mirror concerning the beauty of her entire form, but she seemed most concerned about her hairdo and the attractiveness of that ruff. Finally I heard her asking who I was and where I was from. Sophronius reported in a few words what he knew: I was known only by reputation in these regions, which were separated from my native land by a great distance; I had moved here, eager to see everything; I was besides the most skillful prophet of all, who could control the motions of the stars and promote or retard the favorable or unfavorable destinies of mortals according to my will. My ears itched excessively at this excessive praise, and convincing myself that these statements were true, I began to love Sophronius all the more.
30. But the maiden was affected by his words, and turning to me began to ask how the weather pleased me here and whether it was milder than at home. She also asked about the habits and graciousness of my fellow countrymen, about husbands’ indulgence of their wives there and about the sophistication and eloquence of suitors there. Finally she asked about the beauty of our women, whether they were lovelier than elsewhere. I answered each question in the way that I thought best to capture the fancy of the questioner: in my homeland beautiful women were perhaps more numerous, but in these parts I had met women whose elegance would efface the beauty of the whole world, among whom (in my opinion) she herself took the first place. But the girl, brought up with such gallantries, was not slow in her response: “Your opinion certainly differs from this mirror’s, and because the mirror was chosen by my own hands and is not at all false, the suspicion of flattery must fall on you. But I will forgive your mistake, as long as you do not think my wits are so slow that I agree with you. No indeed, you make me guilty of giving the grounds for your mistake if your sentiments led you to value my beauty higher than my merits.” Then Sophronius gave way to me as I approached the girl, and we most politely joined battle ourselves. I said to the maiden: “I must accuse your mirror of false witness if it disagrees with my most accurate vision; nor do I think that such a beautiful form is ruled by a spirit so dull that it would allow me to convince you of anything but the truth. Nor could I convince you beyond your merits, which are infinite, and if I refused to do so, that face of your would force this acknowledgment from me even without the use of the rack. For who, unless he lacked sight, would deny the golden glow of the sun or the silvery gleam of the moon?” At this the girl smiled back and said: “I urge you not to mention these things to those people who know my true ugliness, or they will declare that you either are in love or have never seen anyone good-looking.”
31. As our friendliness grew and as we each flirted with the other—although somewhat insipidly on my part — my modesty was not hiding the direct gazes which my passionate lust was forcing from me and which contradicted or counteracted my insipid comments. Even more, although I was unaware of it, something was swelling in my groin and pushing against my clothing and was driving the girl, who was unused to such an exhibition and was trembling and blushing, out of the room—not however before she showed that my insanity was not displeasing to her, and she aroused in me (with the cleverness usual in her sex) the hope of attaining something more. She had already noticed the swelling indications of a developed, not just a nascent, flame, but since she was the only one aware of this offense, she restrained her displeasure. On the other hand Sophronius was struck with some amazement while I was being carried away with my eager gazing at the maiden’s face, and with his eyes swimming with tears he looked at me, apparently sinking fast, if the frequency of his windy sighs had not dispelled the oncoming storm.
32. I was afraid that suspicion of being a rival had fallen on me and pitying Sophronius, I was preparing doom, with more than Herculean courage, for my evil “exhibition,” for which not even Ciceronian eloquence can find a name. But then Sophronius, as if waking from a stupor, cried out: “O Pantaleon, how I pity you! You are a foreigner and I was born elsewhere, not on this soil. But I will give you advice which will save your life — unless you are too proud to listen to one who had learned the local character at his own cost. Flee, Pantaleon, flee those plagues, those pleasures which harm their willing victims. Your respectable appearance and age (since you have not yet finished your fourth lustrum and your cheeks are not yet bearded) and your carefully arranged locks of hair will submerge you in a sea of troubles, if you do not consult your intelligence. You will experience cruel love-affairs, which the women will try to conceal, and in so doing they will take away from you all hope of receiving any kindness, lest it seem that you extorted this kindness from them by a pretended friendship, only to put them to scorn. You will not dare to declare your love to them (even though they might wish it), nor will they dare to open their hearts to you. And if you try to express your feelings by the hot glances of your eyes or by suggestive gestures or by close and careful attendance, you will waste your youth and your years in useless labor, before you remove any suspicion about your constancy. In vain will you call yourself an honorable man who tells no secrets. Either your silence or the sincerity of your love will come into question. The worst thing is that even when the goddess favors you and fortune smiles on you, your lovers will take away both goddess and fortune with a damaging kindness, so that nothing solid is left to you, and you will depend on her will, not on your own. Thus condemned to a long slavery, you will be her lover only as long as she wishes; you will suffer untold miseries and fall into countless troubles. And happy only when in the depths of disaster, you will convince everyone of the poverty-stricken sincerity of your love. Some women try to drive their lovers mad, and later, now unconcerned about their repute, they more readily receive these madmen as lovers. Some lovers lose all control over themselves, because they are insensible of everything and are unaware of present circumstances, or because their memory is lost and as a result they have forgotten the past. In addition (and what may be of most importance) the women perhaps think that if the higher faculties are amputated, Nature will distribute their energy to the lower organs and will render their lovers more suitable for love-making. I will tell you a good story, and very true.”
33. I could not endure any further lecture against women and I said: “Spare your attacks on this sex, Sophronius, and remember that you had a mother. Save your story for someone who is not starving. All history is untimely to a growling stomach, and I feel my stomach has contracted and both sides are touching each other, especially since my bowels have long been emptied by the jouncing of the horse. Let’s enter Chrysophilus’s chamber. A feast summons us there, one enough to satisfy not only the household, but an entire town.” With this we crossed the courtyard, and I followed Sophronius as he pushed into the room.
34. There we found a long table laden with many platters full of capons, pigeons, quail, and partridges, and a huge supply of food such as had not furnished Chrysophilus’s house for a year. That man of notorious miserliness was rarely in the habit of receiving guests, and since he had not been able to refuse the current guests, he had decided to send them away early. They were seating themselves with ceremonial no less unseemly than when they had entered; for the others were now deferring to the maiden, whose headdress and neck were glowing with large pearls, and even more to Coloeus. Her face, which took away the shine from the pearls, and his well-trusted skill and favor with the king attracted a reverent worship from everyone. To forestall any disputes Chrysophilus put one of the guests on the other side of Coloeus and sat down placing Coloeus at his right. He ordered the maiden to sit on his left as a substitute for his wife, who was in Nequasia. He sat in between both at the end of the table. He was morose with everyone because of his disease, and even more morose from his innate gloominess, and he sat there sober and a judge of everyone else’s sobriety. Sophronius kept me close by his side.
35. During the banquet there was much talk about the feuds of the Liberians and the Nequasians’ love for the king; also about Sophobulus’s power and trustworthiness, and his astounding intelligence in administering matters of war and domestic policy. Liberia had not marveled at his like for many ages: enemies were defeated abroad by his Ulysses-like cunning; war across the Alps was successfully completed; at home plots among the people were detected before they were made; rebels were defeated in war; and the most marvelous thing — although he was a civilian, he was most fortunate at arms, so that he straightway crushed anyone who openly dared to revolt against Clodovaeus. And with the contrivance of Sophobulus, the Macedonian’s victories made glory for him [Sophobulus]. The "Water-drinkers" owed their freedom to Sophobulus, as well as to the Macedonian, since the Macedonian was brought to Nergamia with the assistance and planning of Sophobulus, and because of this he freed princes, nations, provinces and cities from slavery and drove the enemy from the field. He restored Thereutis Emporium to its master after it had been twice captured by the Aquilians. And in dying the Macedonian conquered the conquerors and he will live for all eternity with never-dying fame and everlasting glory. What should I say of the republic of the Chemeani, which was elevated even to be a capital of the Iberians? Thus the banqueters conversed about the prudence and cleverness of Sophobulus. But since I was an ignorant and unequipped guest, not knowing the Liberian language or Liberian affairs, I had not yet begun to understand the heroic virtues of Sophobulus. But I was eager to set out for Nequasia, a famous city and one unknown to me.
36. After we finished the meal, I had to consult Sophronius about my trip, since the association with him had begun to please me for some unknown virtue in it. Moreover, since he was on the point of setting out for Nequasia, he urged me to add myself as the sixth to the five who were already with him. It was unfortunate that my horse was far away at the time when the rest were leaving, and for that reason he asked that I hasten my journey to Nequasia and said that (in his opinion) I should take lodging with him only at “The Sign of the Porcupine.” The maiden, eager for my forecasts, put a stop to his advice, but I was beginning to dislike Chrysophilus’s sobriety, and mindful of Sophronius’s advice, I began to fear danger to myself from the girl’s beauty and the armor of Cupid. The girl, unable to change my fixed determination to leave, approached Chrysophilus and told him to hold me prisoner. Chrysophilus himself, somewhat concerned about the future, being indeed doubtful and worried about his offspring, also urged me to pass a few days with him: “Our pleasant fields, level and extending in all directions, often cause travelers to extend their stay here. Our people, even though we are in the country, are cosmopolitan and second to none in sophistication and courtly elegance. In all Liberia you will never find a more suitable place than my house in which to lay aside your native rustic manners.” And lest I doubt his words, he followed his speech with an elegant fart. In fact, immediately plopping his bare behind on a round wooden toilet, pressing his abdomen and with his lungs fully expanded by his breath, he strained out long stinking feces below, while stammering out words above. I was no longer troubled by my horse or my injured forehead, but by a much worse affliction, being almost suffocated by this reeking conversation. And so I blocked the passages of smell with both hands and rushed out of the old man’s house, but even though I ran through many farms and villages, and although I was far away, Chrysophilus’s stench kept assaulting my nostrils.
37. At last I stopped in a town where I hired a traveling horse for an agreed-on price, with the horse’s owner as a guide. We had scarcely come to the first milepost when my guide’s wife caught up with us and asked if I could lend her the back part of the horse, since she was tired from walking. I did not refuse the embrace of an attractive woman, and after she was seated on the horse’s rump, both her arms held me tightly, reaching under my coat and twining her fingers around my front above my midsection. Then with our close association all my members began to grow pleasantly stiff, even what was flaccid before, and pushing the woman’s hand down to my groin I said: “Grab this handle so that you won’t be thrown to the ground by the misstep of the stumbling horse.” She seized it eagerly and first handled it smoothly, then having fun herself, with her slippery fingers she rubbed back and forth and gave me a half-dose of pleasure.
My censorious readers ask why I write shameful things;
I ask my readers why they do shameful things.
You do nasty things, I write them, we both commit sin,
But my sin of writing is less than yours of doing.
For you will see in this story as if in a mirror
You and your morals, dear reader, and your character.
If this causes disgust and you become angry
And frown severely, why do you read these poems?
Do you want to take revenge for my laughter at your deeds?
Say so! I will repay the favor and I’ll laugh at your writings.
38. While I looked back at her approaching husband, whom I had intentionally left behind by spurring on my horse, I caught the kisses given me by the passionate woman, and next I caught my breath. Her voice, hindered by frequent broken panting, and the redness of her face caused by the blood rushing to her extremities were all signs of one expiring. Worried I asked the cause of her affliction. At first she said nothing, then as the force of her excitement lessened, she replied: “You are really a child. Don’t you know that women are more inclined to lust than are men? I caught this disease from this wretched contact with you. Some women, with their flirting and empty kissing, excite the anxiety of love in young men and perfect pleasure in themselves. In this way they deceive the chaste and are considered happy and fortunate, if somewhat self-indulgent, and gain an honorable repute. I am not of their number. I admit no one within the bounds of my dress unless he pays the price. All the other activities in the name of love turn out to be only baits and allurements.”
39. As she was poised to say more, she was interrupted by the arrival of three horsemen who were singing sweetly. After they passed, I asked her to which nobleman those actors belonged. She replied: “Those whom you call actors have ancestors that go back to Pharamond. In these parts it is the custom that men lighten the rough parts of the road with song." "Indeed," I said, "with their singing we have reached the territory of the city. Look, there is all Nequasia in view."
40. As we came up to the walls of the city, I ordered the woman to slip down from the horse and to go ahead to “The Sign of the Porcupine.”
But she smiled and said: “You will spend a wonderful time with a detested husband and a wife who is certainly not to be rejected, who is beautiful indeed!”
I answered: “What will a capon do with a wife, even a pretty one? Or do you think physical beauty will revive the dead organs of a eunuch?”
“Not at all,” she replied. “But under the guise of a dowry for the girls of Nequasia, one hundred pounds of beauty are credited as one talent of net worth, and one thousand pounds. of beauty are credited as 10 talents of annual return. Surely in Nequasia to get an attractive wife is considered to be worth a large price, in addition to renting a beautiful house and a productive farm. If the impotent husband does not know how to cultivate his field, he will find a deputy for himself in such an army.”
41. While she was continuing to talk, she brought me to the inn. When I inquired, Sophronius’s servants said that he was dining in town, and he was not expected to return until late in the night, but that he had told them to take care of me well. Counting out the cash, I satisfied my guide, who was unwilling to accept what was enough, and I withdrew alone to an upstairs room, since my broken forehead drove me from the company of men whom I did not know. Immediately the maid lit a small pile of wood, putting a flame under it; she set the table and made the bed with luxurious clean linen. Refreshed by a hurried dinner, I took off my clothes and sinking into the mattress, I settled my wounded head for a rest.
42. I have shown, dear reader, the wanderings of our prophet up to this point, even now doubtful about writing more until I am assured of your good wishes. For if the story pleases the learned and noble readers, I will write more — and better — tales. But if it does not so please, I will condemn it to eternal darkness. The unlearned, the untrained, the dull-witted, and spiteful I despise, besides those who accuse me of plagiarism, as well as those obviously guilty of ignorance or malice.
Those rosy streams that trickle from the rose mountain
Resound through dark caverns with your praises,
Because your gifts gained entry through thrice-locked doors
And you rescued a wretch from Stygian gloom.
You are of the race of Gowrie, and the noble offspring of Graham,
Worthy scion of both houses, Gowrie and Graham.
Whom did you help? Do you ask who is now giving you
Thanks? It is I, also born of Gowrie blood.
Enclosed by three-fold gates at a three-fold door,
The door where Cerberus rushes with his three heads.
Idle poems weary the doors and weary Acheron;
My slow poems go forward with my prayers.
The three-fold doors stand no less motionless on their hinges,
And the three-headed guardian is no less vigilant.
Of course the matter is saved with short labor;
It was saved of course by your hands.
With three fingers you alone were stronger than all gates,
And the thousand windings of the entrance.
The courage of Hercules or the race of Hercules is the
Only thing that could defeat the undefeated Geryon.
Noble in both family and virtue, and noble in art,
Thus you will be able to shatter these strong doors.
my hair stood on end
With horror and cold trembling seized my pale limbs.
And I pried into everything all around with my eyes,
And feared that the house would collapse on me.
May Jupiter thrust that hated house into a sulfurous
Swamp with his thunderbolt
45. Another fragment. The noise of the hurrying wheels echoing through the winding alleyway barely roused me from my stupor. Soon there were torches carried by footmen with an embroidered tapestry concealing the painted faces of the ladies. Two guards accompanied each lady, carrying swords and with cloaks of thick silk hanging from their left sides. With their arms akimbo they led the ladies, who were gleaming brighter than the ivory and gold on their extended fingers. The same number of unmarried girls followed behind. The lady whose house they entered came at the rear of the procession, and behind her came the most loyal of the chambermaids, reveling with groups of their fellow servants.
46. Right away they rushed to embrace each other and there were hardly enough kisses as they greeted one another. It was far into the night before two suspended carriages finally carried the untimely guests away. Only the lady remained, attended by two maids who could be distinguished from their mistress only by their shabbier clothing. Their hair was dressed in two braids lightly wound around the back of their heads, and artificially crimped locks of hair touched their temples and beautified them by covering half their foreheads with a variegated appearance. But two rows of jewels rested on the lady’s head, whose gleam was obscured by the woman’s great beauty.
47. She roamed the whole courtyard with worried eyes and said: “Where are you, Pantaleon?” I immediately jumped from my hiding place and bent my face to the ground and gave a modest kiss to her right hand. She said to me as I did this: “Do you not dare to do more, Pantaleon?” Then she led me with a desirous hand into a very pleasant garden. The blue dome of the sky, painted with flashing ornaments, sparkled all over with far-away flames. Nor did the moon with her unwelcome rays take away the indistinct light of the Milky Way. The other wandering orbs had just set near the royal luminary [the sun], and had not yet completed their full circuit re-emerging in the east. Only Jupiter shone from mid-heaven with its powerful ray and made feeble shadows. I said “O Lady, a harsh fate awaits you. For the most chaste of all the goddesses has turned her face away from such a wicked woman and has hidden her head in the other hemisphere. And since she has been struck with the leaden glow of the slowest of the orbs which ascend to the zenith of heaven, she portends grave disaster. And the ill-omened Adulterer [Mars] does not dissent, who is in the deadly house of Saturn and to whom you will pay a bloody penalty because of the crimes of your wicked life.”
48. Disturbed by these words, the lady fainted as if struck by lightening, and her limbs were not strong enough to support her as she fell. Terrified at this unexpected collapse, I rushed to her side as she fell unconscious, and I prayed to all the gods and goddesses for her safety. Nor in vain did the goddess of Eryx [Venus] pity her most vigorous champion. Soon she was drawing short breaths like one dying, when she gave a groan from deep in her breast, stretched out her limbs, and wearied the grass beneath her. I said: “O Lady, I do not envy Louis for conquering Savoy nor Alexander for dominating the world nor Jupiter for his place in the heavens since you have now blessed me beyond the gods with unforeseen delights.” But she handled with her soothing fingers my reluctant prick, not yet stiff (because of the winter’s cold, I think), and said: <“Have you lost your potency? Will you not yet> put down the mint? I am certainly not accustomed to the cold. We have stayed here too long and I will not endure this harsh air.” I readily followed her as she dragged me into her most welcome house.
49. The dark shadows of the night easily resisted the feeble candle and complimented the modest lady by hiding the blush which appeared on her face. Propping her head on her arm and keeping off any bright light with a thin shawl, she admitted: “You are a fine prophet, Pantaleon! If you lose that position, I suggest you become a priest of Priapus. You will certainly have crowded temples and altars from the large mob of maidservants which populates Nequasia.”
But I replied: “O most beautiful of women, by your face of great beauty, by your sweet eyes which breath forth charm, by those rosy lips with which you blessed me beyond all the gods, I call everyone to witness by what fate and with what power you exalted this despised young man to the highest level of happiness.”
50. Protesting at this, the lady said: “Do you thing me so foolish, Pantaleon, that I would risk the danger of rejection or that in a fit of heedless passion I would provoke an unknown young man, perhaps a worthless or stupid one? Or expose my beauty and my even more cherished reputation to the foolish whims of some treacherous good-for-nothing or of someone who might scorn his mistress? You do not know yourself well enough, not as well as I know your character and the integrity obvious in your face. I have learned this from your Florida, whom you love desperately, who often has pointed you out to me through the window gratings as you passed by.”
51. “O savage girl!” I said. “What did she have to do with the loveliest of women?” But she answered: “No, you are savage, Pantaleon. She is deeply in love with you. My cousin hid from me neither the conversations which you had nor your caddish behavior. Really, if the timid did not often lose their courage, long since you would have happily carried to your homeland the untouched spoils of her rare beauty. But I really marvel that such an energetic stud loves so timidly. I am more courageous and more intelligent than that inexperienced girl, and I know your character more deeply. I want to beg your faithfulness, and rightly so, since you are a well-born youth, who cannot be possessed of a fickle and ungrateful spirit. I do not doubt your love, which I will certainly not concede to my cousin, whether in gifts of body or of mind. Besides, the sure testimony of this unexpected love of mine, freely given, urges me on, and I know that this would be more pleasing than anything to Pantaleon.”
52. Since I was violently overcome with joy, my thin blood rushed through the vital passages into the extremities of my body, and the constant motion of the blood would have left its flow bloodless, if I had not exchanged breaths with the fainting lady. A great pleasure arose from the twin joining as we mixed our breaths, from the lusty pressing of lips and the solid contacts of our groins, until a shuddering chill pervaded all my veins and my useless members lay flat. As usual in secret affairs, the woman called a maid who was listening with all ears and said: “Why did the door creak?" Soon a page in a colored jacket stood near, who reported that Camillus had arrived, but was entertaining himself with a card game in the adjoining inn. The page said: "I am going there to take this candle to my master." And with these words he left, closing the door behind him.
53. This was no place for a long dialogue, although she had sent the page away with well-considered quickness of expression, since our exterior organs of speech were occupied with close kisses. Nor did the shortness of time allow it, but with difficulty the lady sent me away, although I was unwilling to go. She became silent at this unexpected arrival of her husband, and I rushed out the open back door, and with prudence worthy of the gods, I removed myself from clear and present danger and disgrace.
54. Another fragment. Pitch-black night had already fallen, and the all-seeing rays of the Titan were making noon-time for the inverted Antipodeans. The midnight sky was near, and deep sleep had overcome all the Nequasians. The sad silence of the shadows struck me with no trivial fear that I should pass by the prince, who was traversing the middle of the bridge, carried on a similar horse, and that I might fail to salute him. But a worse assault drove out this fear....